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Child Abuse Negl. 1995 May;19(5):619-32.

Childhood adversity, parental stress, and depression of negligent mothers.

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Department of Psychology, Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Canada.


The objective of this study was to identify major childhood events that were experienced by negligent mothers matched with non-negligent mothers as well as to define the existing link between those events, depression of the mother and parental stress. The sample was composed of 80 French-speaking Canadian families. The measures used were the Parental Stress Index (Abidin, 1983), the Psycho-Social Interview (Ethier et al., 1989) and the Beck Depression Inventory (1961). The results have shown an extreme level of parental stress and a high level a depression for negligent mothers. The negligent mothers had a history of placements, violence and sexual abuse, but they did not differ from control mothers for parental breakups and nonavailability. We have also shown a significant link between childhood events, depression, and parental stress even more so for the control group than for the negligence group. The results are discussed in the perspective of attachment theory.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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